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The Mosquito Coast (1986)

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An eccentric and dogmatic inventor sells his house and takes his family to Central America to build a utopia in the middle of the jungle. Conflicts with his family, a local preacher and ... See full summary »



(novel), (screenplay)
4,555 ( 593)
Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jadrien Steele ...
Hilary Gordon ...
Rebecca Gordon ...
Mr. Polski
Alice Heffernan-Sneed ...
Mrs. Polski (as Alice Sneed)
Tiger Haynes ...
Mr. Semper
William Newman ...
Captain Smalls
Andre Gregory ...
Reverend Spellgood
Melanie Boland ...
Mrs. Spellgood
Raymond Clare ...
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An eccentric and dogmatic inventor sells his house and takes his family to Central America to build a utopia in the middle of the jungle. Conflicts with his family, a local preacher and with nature are only small obstacles to his obsession. Based upon a Paul Theroux novel. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Allie Fox followed his dream to the Mosquito Coast. He planned a paradise. He created a Hell. See more »


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

26 November 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mosquito Coast  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$25,000,000 (estimated)


$14,302,779 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In an 'Entertainment Weekly' magazine article entitled 'Regarding Harrison' from a 1992 interview, star Harrison Ford said of this movie: "It's the only film I have done that hasn't made its money back. I'm still glad I did it. If there was a fault with the film, it was that it didn't fully enough embrace the language of the [source] book [by Paul Theroux]. It may have more properly been a literary rather than a cinematic exercise. But I think it's full of powerful emotions". See more »


While Allie Fox and his family are being lashed by violent winds and near horizontal rain during a hurricane a couple of palm trees in the background are standing perfectly still. See more »


[first lines]
Charlie: My father was an inventor, a genius with anything mechanical. Nine patents, six pending. He dropped out of Harvard, "to get an education", he said. I grew up with the belief that the world belonged to him, and that everything he said was true.
Allie Fox: Look around ya, how did America get this way? Land of promise, land of opportunity. Give us the wretched refuse of your teeming shores. Have a Coke. Watch TV.
Charlie: Have a nice day.
Allie Fox: Go on welfare. Get free money. Turn to crime - crime pays in this ...
See more »


Referenced in Kicking and Screaming (1995) See more »


Clap Your Hands
Words and Music by Gary Johnson
Performed by Grace Gospel Primary School Choir
See more »

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User Reviews

Anti hero falls short of redemption
7 March 2006 | by (Saigon, Vietnam) – See all my reviews

With much of Harrison Ford's career during the eighties dominated by his participation in George Lucas and Spielberg blockbusters, it comes as a relief to discover that in between his numerous flights on the Milennium Falcon and slashing his whip he found time to star in many low key movies. Among these hidden treasures is The Mosquito Coast, a character driven story about one mans attempt to recreate an Eden in a faraway land. And his secret to survival? Ice.

This is an interesting movie, not only because it has an all star cast, that includes River Phoenix, but because we see Harrison Ford give his all to creating a character that is multi dimensional. He is an idealist and has the best intentions, yet is doomed to failure as the viewer senses an impeding violent side to his vision which will come to destroy him.

As a movie this is a good study of man's attempt to act upon his dreams, as a lighthearted pop corn flick this will annoy the average mainstream cinema goer. Simply put, many people will find it hard to imagine Harrison Ford as anything else other than the super hero incarnation of Indiana Jones, and multi faceted anti heroes that never see the errors of their ways is a genre of cinema that Hollywood hasn't quite got their head around yet.

For everybody else who would like to see a movie that has depth, great acting and a solid script, this will be excellent viewing.

26 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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